Today we look at the Beyerdynamic DT 900 Pro X, the latest studio headphone from the German brand, a new model selling for €249 EUR.
Disclaimer: the Beyerdynamic DT 900 Pro X was sent to us free of charge by the brand, in exchange for our honest opinion.
Founded in 1924 by Eugen Beyer, Beyerdynamic is (by far) one of the oldest headphone and microphone manufacturers.
Initially focused on the manufacture of cinema speakers, the “Elektrotechnische Fabrik Eugen Beyer” quickly switched to broadcast systems, with success. And, in 1937, Beyer unveiled its very first dynamic headphones: the DT48. A headphone unique in more than one way, not content with being the first dynamic headphone on the market, it will be produced without interruption until… 2013 !
And up to this day, Beyerdynamic is still owned by the children and grandchildren of Eugen Beyer. A daring choice that resulted in numerous successes: development of the first wireless microphone in 1962 (transistophone); launch of the DT880 in 1980, the first dynamic headphones to compete with electrostatics; followed by the DT770 and DT990 in 1985, oriented towards audiophiles rather than studios.
Nevertheless, it was not until 2009 that Beyer unveiled its first truly “audiophile” system: the T1. A revolutionary headphone, embodying a dynamic Tesla transducer, capable of delivering a magnetic field exceeding… the Tesla. A feat that will be introduced on two other models in 2010: the T50p (nomad) and the DT1350 (studio).
Since then, Beyerdynamic has been able to adapt its Tesla transducers to many headphones. Whether they are nomadic (Aventho), in-ear (Xelento), professional (DT1990/1770 Pro) and of course sedentary (Amiron), all produced and assembled in Germany!
And today, we have the chance to review their whole new DT 900 Pro X, the open-back alternative to the DT 700 Pro X we reviewed last week.
DT 700/900 PRO X Series
Pro vs Pro X : what’s the difference?
Compared to the pro series, the new Pro X difference is in the details: new driver (STELLAR.45), removable XLR cable, better construction, and most of all, better sensitivity, so you can use those headphones without the need for a high power amplifier.
Will the Pro X replace the Pro series? It doesn’t seem to be the case, as both series remain available on Beyer’s website
Beyerdynamic DT 700 Pro X
Dedicated to recording and monitoring sessions, the Beyerdynamic DT 700 Pro X is a brother of the DT770 Pro, one of the most popular headphone in the music world. It’s not a DT770 Pro replacement.
Closed-back headphone, designed for noisy environments or crowded places, it was advertised as “detailed, powerful and vibrant” by the German brand. A terrific headphone for the price, that we already reviewed and praised, just one week ago.
“It’s built like a tank, amazingly comfy, magically linear and sounds like a 4 digit headphones and cut sounds like a champ. In fact, for this price, it’s basically a steal and if I could write long, convoluted sentences about how magical it is, I’ll just ask you to get off your desk, and go listen to it at your closest audio shop. Now!”
Beyerdynamic DT 900 Pro X
Dedicated to critical listening, mixing & mastering sessions, the Beyerdynamic DT 900 Pro X shares the exact same driver as the DT 700 Pro X, but gets an open-back design. On paper, it’s a minor difference, but as you’ll see in next week review, small changes can have big impacts, as the brand advertises this one as “detailed, spacious and transparent.
This is the one we’re gonna talk about today, and I won’t lie to you: after what I heard with the DT700 Pro X, my expectations were high!
Design & Build Quality
At first glance, the Beyerdynamic DT 900 Pro X looks almost exactly the same as its predecessor: large ear cups, grey ear pads, and a massive headband. A design almost four decade old now, that slightly evolved with each generation. In fact, if you look closer, those small – but definitive – improvements will immediately be visible.
First and foremost, the cable is now detachable, which is a first for the DT900/DT700 series. And unlike what I thought, this was not the first time, as both the DT 1770 PRO, the DT 1990 PRO, and even the DT 240 PRO already got detachable cables. (thanks to Marco for the tip).
Next to that, we have the headband, slightly smaller, which left the old pleather-covered design, for a more classic one, with a small cushion located on the lower section. Beyer also removed the old plastic clips, and gave the steel yoke a completely new design, for a fresher, smarter look.
Finally, let’s take a look at the new cups, which were also completely redesigned. When the “old” DT990 Pro sports an open-back design based on a grill, the new DT 900 Pro X went for a variation of the DT 700 Pro X cups. Basically, those two Pro X headphones share the same outlines, and BeyerDynamic simply cut some rectangular holes in the shell, to create an open-back headphone. A good choice in my opinion, as this new version looks considerably better while being more robust.
Build quality? Top-notch! And once again, if the Beyerdynamic DT 900 Pro X are one of the most affordable headsets I’ve got in my collection, they still look and feel like THE reference. They are incredibly sturdy and once out of the box, you immediately understand that they were made to take a beating.
The cups are made of rugged plastic, the headband from spring steel and now that the cable can be replaced, I’m pretty sure that you could daily use those headphones, tossed at the bottom of a backpack, and stay perfectly fine after months of that treatment.
Obviously, this won’t be the case for the velour ear pads. But those can also be replaced if required!
Last but not least, let’s talk about the cable. Identical to the previous one, it now comes with a mini-XLR termination, so you can choose the right one for your recording sessions. There is no balanced option, but that’s common for a “professional headset”, where balanced options are not that common for this kind of use.
All in all, it is as beautiful as it is solid. I like that!
Tailored for extra-long sessions, the Beyerdynamic DT 900 Pro X is supremely comfy.
I’ve used it for hours and compared to the previous generation, this one feels like a completely different beast. The clamping is perfect, the large earpads completely surround my ears and the headphone is so amazingly balanced that it almost disappeared on my head.
Don’t get me wrong, this is not a lightweight headset, but the level of craftsmanship was so high, that once I’ve put it on my head, I never had to move or replace it. Add to that the supremely supple velour earpads, and the DT 900 Pro X immediately raise to the top of my list as THE most comfortable headphone I own, for the moment.
Compared to the DT 700 Pro X, the 900 seems to offer better ears’ ventilation, but in the long run, the difference is negligible, psychosomatic even.
German quality at its finest.
If the Beyerdynamic DT 700 Pro X was design to isolate, the DT 900 Pro X goes the opposite way, and leak sounds both inward and outward. But, this is the goal, and the headphone is suited for studio mix and mastering, where openness prime above isolation.
Great if you want to be aware of your surrounding, not so much if you want to travel, logic.
So, time to check the specs!
Page 2: Bundle, specifications
Page 3: Sound Performances